Right now, winter may be biting at anyone who’s out early enough in the morning, but we’re lucky to live in a region where the sun is never far from the horizon and, once it’s up, you’re going to need to make sure you’re looking good as well as protecting your eyes. Check out the hows, the whats, and the whys in our guide to this season’s best sunglasses for men.
2020’s trends are a wild and varied bunch. However, if you’re anything like us, you’ve probably got a couple of classic Wayfarers or Aviators as your regular ‘go-to’ choices and are looking for an extra pair or two of something on-trend that’ll mark you out as a man ready to face the challenges of the 21st century’s third decade.
So, let’s start at the top…
1. Wayfarers – didn’t we just say these were classics? So, why do they have a place in our ‘on-trend’ list of best sunglasses for men? Well, simply, Wayfarers are ALWAYS on-trend. Ray-Ban first named the style in 1956 (although they didn’t invent the style). Every year since then, the Wayfarer (Ray-Ban’s and other brands) have been the favored choice of celebrities and rock’n’roll legends… as well as office- and weekend-legends like us. Put a pair of Wayfarers on your list – and if you’ve already got a pair, get another!
BUYING TIP: Select sunglasses that do more than make you look good – choose a pair that’ll make you see well too! Polarized lenses offer an easy route towards protecting your eyes… and you’ll help you see better as well – here’s why
2. Aviators – we know, and we promise to deliver a few surprises later, but no list of the best sunglasses for men would be complete with the Aviator. A good pair of Aviator sunglasses and, with their metal frames, you’re already in one of last (and this!) century’s most iconic styles. For 2020, why not pep the look up a bit and look at some with acetate frames. Same style – 21st century man!
BUYING TIP: Ultra violet protection is your friend – but check what you’re buying! To be sold as UV sunglasses, however, they offer both UV-A and UV-B protection to block at least 99 percent of ultraviolet radiation. Go for 100 UV protection for the ultimate in UV ray resistance!
3. Horn-rimmed – also known as ‘The Clubmaster’, these great frames hark back to the 1950s and the decade’s browline sunglasses trend. Supremely retro, yet bang on-trend, these stylish sunglasses suit a wide variety of face shapes. Another style made famous by the ubiquitous Ray-Ban, also looks for great contemporary versions by Warby Parker! Vintage and timeless, let a good pair of horn-rimmed glasses bring out the inner intellectual within you, and mark you as a someone who knows the best sunglasses for men when he sees them!
BUYING TIP: In most cases, UV protection also offers blue light protection. Select glasses with 100 UV protection, and they will also absorb most of the blue light, also known as HEV rays. However, the color of the lens matters also counts in raising protection against HEV light. Bronze, copper, or reddish-brown lenses offer the best protection.
4. Round Frames – round rimmed eyewear has always made a strong statement about the wearer. Often chosen by pioneers and visionaries, round frames are familiar on the faces of creatives, intellectuals, scientists, and some of our favorite fictional heroes. While we didn’t see Ghandi in a pair of Maui Jim, we can’t imagine Steve Jobs in anything other than stainless steel round frames. The round shape of these frames hints toward an out of the box thinker – someone who sees the world differently to the rest of us. Sounds like you?
BUYING TIP: Do you find you’re notorious for your carelessness of possessions? No matter how careful you are with a pair of sunglasses, they’re going to be open to every knock life gives you, and every sharp edge too! Invest in a pair of scratch resistant glasses. They’re not impervious to the most brutal treatment, but should see you through this summer and in to the next!
5. Mirrored Lenses – say YES to mirror lens sunglasses for 2020. One of the biggest trends in eyewear for some time now and some of the best sunglasses for men, they’re showing no sign of their popularity waning! A favorite of celebs and the well-dressed gentleman alike, they’re guaranteed to add a hint of youthfulness and fun to any man that wears them. Whatever frame shape favors your face, you’ll be able to find a mirrored version. Aggressive with their ‘right back at you’ attitude? Perhaps. But who doesn’t like to slip on a little ‘tude from time to time? When the moment is right for a mirrored lens pair of shades… you’ll know it.
BUYING TIP: Go for an oversized frame – oversized clear frame glasses are a trendy style statement for 2020. The greatest advantage of using oversized transparent frames is that they create more visibility for your face from a distance. Also, they are the best pick to add some drama to your style statement.
6. Notch Bridge – what was it about the 1950s that led to the creation of so many classic styles of sunglasses? Here’s another – originally brought to fame by Persol, there are countless modern expressions of the notch bridge – so-called for the notch that defines the, um, well, bridge. Every designer worth his or her salt soon adopted this look, and it’s back in a big way for 2020… in a variety of frame shapes too!
BUYING GUIDE: Prescription sunglass lenses make a lot of sense! As we said at the beginning, buying the right sunglasses isn’t only about looking good, it’s about seeing well too! Glass lenses, or the high-performance modern plastic lenses of the best sunglasses for men, can be crafted to match your optician’s prescription.
7. Colored Frames – a colorful pair of sunglasses delivers a sure-fire way of rounding off your eyewear collection. Colored frames, like the mirrored lenses, add an unexpected pop to any outfit, and give your look an element of fun without going overboard. Make your favorite color a part of your signature style and add your personality to your look with a pair of colored frames.
8. Activewear – with sunglasses for sports, it is their wraparound style that defines them. In the same way that garish the sports watch has become en vogue, so have garish sports sunglasses. It doesn’t matter whether you’re at the front of the peloton or the back of the bus queue, if you’re rocking a pair of wraparound shades you’re a winner already. Functional and nerdy, there are few things the fashionista crowd loves more for 2020 than technical performance wear!
Quick overview: want to match your frame style to your personality? Follow our speedy guide to getting the right shape of best sunglasses for men!
Minimalist – a classic frame with a non-threatening colour, like black or gray. Choose indistinct frames, like semi-rimless, rimless, or oval glasses that do not take up too much of your face.
Trendy – blend vintage with modern styles, enjoy thicker rims, and even go for the edgy colours like bold reds and green. Shape-wise, you stick with the round and wayfarer styles.
Rebel – live your own style with thick rims, vintage frames, and take it back to the 50s. You probably already own oversized aviator and wayfarer styles.
Bohemian – funky, unique shapes, bright colours
Sporty – make it about function with the wrap-around, a semi-rimless, or rectangle glasses to get the job done
Nerd – go geek-chic style with a round or horn-rimmed shaped frame, using vintage and classic colours, and embrace functionality!